I am finally writing about my 5K run for Type 1 Diabetes! It has taken so long to get to this place emotionally (and physically) where I felt like I could write. I will explain why in another post.
Here are some things I learned…
Darth Vader supports finding a cure for Type 1 Diabetes! It was nice to see “The Force” and the Dark Side come together for this event. Although it was sad to hear a child call the Yoda, “Shrek.” Somebody get that kid an episode of Star Wars!
I LOVED ALL THE TEAMS!!! Families of all ages and backgrounds were there, walking together and supporting this cause as a group. There was a Smylie team…
I could see her wearing a shirt that said “Find a Cure For ME!” Here she is with her friends looking at the cars from the car show. The kids with Type 1 Diabetes got to have their picture taken in their favorite one.
You can see this family with their faces painted, in support for a toddler with Diabetes.
Type 1 is a kind that you are born with and can present itself at any age, young or old, although it usually presents itself in children. Having this disease is not related to how you eat or exercise.
These children’s bodies do not produce insulin. Insulin is the hormone that converts sugars, starches and other foods into energy for the body to use. These kids may have to prick their fingers and check their blood’s insulin levels up to 6 times a day.
Still, through all of this event there was such a positive feeling!!!
The pink shirts below say Diabetics are Sweeter! 🙂
And then there’s me, who also helped sponsor the event! Well, kinda. 🙂
I loved the many posters I saw telling people’s stories…
Once the opening ceremony started, the Boy Scouts led us in the Pledge of Allegiance (wow, it’s been a while since I’ve said that!) and we of course were privileged to hear a great performance of
The National Anthem.
Moms and kids alike listened as they announced we had not only reached the goal of raising $140,00 at this event for Type 1 Diabetes research, but they estimated an actual total of $155,000. That is incredible! Especially considering the economy we are in…
I am truly inspired and grateful to all the people who donated to help us reach these numbers and who encouraged me to be part of this race and fundraiser.
The sweet Dad below was there with his two girls and a red wagon to participate in the walk, one even with Down Syndrome. I’m telling you, these people were so positive, happy and supportive of each other! I felt humbled and lucky to be there.
Finally, it was time for the 5K to start! We migrated from the stage to the start. I love this teenage boy’s shirt: “I’m with diabetic ->” LOL
Ashylnn and some other children with Type 1 Diabetes cut the ribbon…
The man with the white hair helping is the CEO of the program.
and going! The line literally stretched for miles!
At one point in my running I caught up with a boy.
He started talking to me, so I turned off my music and talked too. After seeing his shirt I asked him if he was running for a friend or family member. Who was “Austin?”
“I am” he said.
I was caught off guard. I guess I felt like the person the team was there for would be surrounded by his team. On the contrary, he had forged ahead on his own. He had sprinted the majority of the race and I had just caught up to him at the last mile.
We talked, him sharing with a smile and twinkle in his eye that they had raised $456 at a spaghetti feed at his school last week. Then he found a friend from his team and they continued to run together.
I’m so glad I slowed down to talk with this sweet boy and get to know him a little.
As the finish line loomed closer, I got close enough to read the back of the Smylie shirts…
“Until There’s A Cure We’ll Keep Smyling.”
At the finish, runners were given high-5’s by the Star Wars cheering team and treated to lunch.
I was one of the first 30 people to finish, mostly because I ran it while the majority of the people were walking together. I don’t know how my time compared with my last 5K, but I DO know that I felt different. I felt better. I felt amazing because I was running for something I already cared about, learned more about, and had been blessed to see and meet some of the people it affected. The race was not about how fast my time was, it was about giving my time to be there.
Even after I had lunch and started to drive home the powerful parade continued. I took this picture from my car just before leaving…
I love this family, a picket sign and stroller in the lead, marching with love, in hopes for finding a cure.
There is so much good in this world. Yes, there is a lot of bad too. The news usually chooses to cover the bad because people have always been entertained by freak shows and calamities. You’ve seen it, people slwoing down to see the damage of an accident as they drive by.
Well, I hope this post sheds light on a “force” for good in this world, a charity trying to find a cure for Type 1 Diabets. That day I got to slow down my car and stop because a group of friends, families, and strangers were blocking traffic. Their shirts said things like “Find a Cure For Kendra” and “I Walk For Ashlynn.” And I was happy to wait and watch hope march forward to the finish line.